Fashion is for everyone. Maybe that’s why fluid fashion looks to be the largest growing trend in 2021.
If you’ve paid any attention to runways, magazines or even your own Instagram feed over the last few months, you’ll have noticed that there’s been a shift in the way that we see gender within fashion. Of course, there have always been those in the public eye who have played around with androgyny in fashion, specifically in music – David Bowie, Lady Gaga, Miley Cyrus and Harry Styles have all brought gender-fluidity into their look, with Miley Cyrus stating she does indeed consider herself gender-fluid.
However, these days, gender fluidity is growing in popularity amongst all areas of fashion, including in the couture lines of many top designers. Even with traditional styles or touches of femininity and masculinity present within the garments, many top fashion houses are creating pieces with the aim in mind that they can be worn by everyone, no matter their gender identity.
Marc Jacobs is one of the most prominent designers celebrating this shift away from gendered fashion, having recently introduced his ‘Heaven’ range for ‘girls who are boys, boys who are girls and those who are neither’.
Describing the shift away from gendered clothing being the standard, Jacobs said, “It’s just so not that period in time anymore, and for me, it hasn’t really been ever.”
The Spring 2021 couture collections from Fendi, Valentino and Chanel also hint greatly at the move towards less gender-specific fashion. However, at the helm of this movement and bringing perhaps the most out-of-the-box creations to life are smaller designers such as 24-year-old Harris Reed.
Having worked with Harry Styles on his tour wardrobe and recently releasing his debut collection ‘For Now, Unexplained’, Harris Reed is pioneering the gender-fluid fashion movement. Openly gender-fluid himself, Reed says that he hopes that fashion may one day do away with the menswear and womenswear categories altogether.
“Fluidity offers an alternate way of being, crossing and merging masculine and feminine”, Reed explains.
With this in mind, it’s no surprise that ‘For Now, Unexplained’ crosses and merges the boundaries throughout, with tiered skirts, grand headdresses and suit jackets decorated with cascading tulle – all designed in a way that means the pieces can be worn by everyone, no matter which way they identify their gender.
On releasing the collection, Reed described how ‘For Now, Unexplained’ is a love letter to ‘unashamed self-expression’.
“The six-look collection sees Reed continue his exploration of London’s visual history,” reads a statement on the designer’s website, “Uniting the anarchy of the punk movement with the dressmakers and debutantes who define Britain’s aristocratic past.”
“The collection finds its spirit in combustion. From concentrations of pressure, beautiful things can flourish.”
With his first endeavours already looking extremely promising and seemingly setting the fashion zeitgeist for years to come, Harris Reed says that his next move is to focus on redefining an element of fashion with the divide between menswear and womenswear at the very heart of it: bridal.
While we can’t foresee the future for fashion, one thing is clear: fluidity within fashion makes it a lot more inclusive, opening up the world of fashion to everybody – and isn’t that what it’s all about? Harris Reed certainly thinks so.
“My message is self-expression and just owning who you are in the biggest, most maximal way possible”, he says, “I think the potential reach for gender-fluid fashion really is everyone.”
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